To Run Outside? Or to Treadmill?

Ah, the age old question of winter. Do I tough it up outside? Or suck it up on the treadmill? On Saturday, I ran outside with my running partner in 8 degree weather with a windchill that probably knocked it below zero. Thankfully the sun was out, so when the wind was at our backs, it wasn’t too bad. However, once we turned around, all bets were off. Not only were we running into the wind, it was uphill! (Which got me thinking of the “When I was your age…” jokes because they seemed pretty appropriate — into the wind, arctic temperatures, up hill both ways!) Then today, it was about 30 degrees but I was on the treadmill because of the time of day and waning sunlight. So clearly, I’m willing to suck it up for a friend! What about you?

A former co-worker named Josh posted his take on temperatures on his blog and I thought it was pretty smart. Here’s what he has to say:

“Sometimes, just running a little in extreme temps is just as good as running your normal distance in more regular temperatures.  So…what is a “normal” temperature anyway.  Here’s a guide.

“Below 0:  Personally, that’s a day off for me.  In Minnesota, it’s probably considered Spring.
0-15 degrees:  That’s cold and you should run in moderation with outstanding winter gear.
15-29 degrees:  Still cold, but you can probably be fine at 30 minutes to 60 minutes with the right gear.
30-50 degrees:  Great for running.
50-70 degrees:  Ideal for running.  Shorts and a shirt (long below 60, short above 60).
70-80 degrees:  Still great for running.  Focus on hydration.  Wear shorts and short sleeve shirt or tank top.
80-90 degrees:  Danger zone if you don’t stay hydrated.  Still can run normal in low to mid 80s.
90+ degrees:  Take it easy, keep hydrated, wear very little (but be legal).”

What do you think? Do you have a temperature or weather condition that is your cut-off? All I know is I’m looking forward to this week with consistent highs in the 30s! Heat wave!


One response to “To Run Outside? Or to Treadmill?

  1. A few years ago I ran a race when it was -15 with a windchill of -27. It was bitterly cold, but we survived! What is kind of crazy is that they have a system in place to decide when it is cold enough to actually cancel or shorten the race! I believe -20 is the cutoff for cancelling, but it may be colder! And they added a 3rd race this year!! A half, 10k, and 5k. If nothing else, check out the link and scroll down for an awesome picture of one of the runners!

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